What is CMS? Here’s Everything You Need to Know

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What is CMS? Here’s Everything You Need to Know
sameekshamedewar

Sameeksha Medewar
Last updated on June 16, 2024

    In this digital world, most businesses have an online presence, i.e., they have a website that features their services and products. As a result, it is important for such businesses to manage and update their websites regularly.

    For this purpose, businesses can use an intuitive system that enables anyone without technical knowledge to create, update, and maintain content on the website. Well, the system that we are talking about is nothing but a CMS.

    CMS is an acronym for Content Management System, which is a tool to manage the content on a website, i.e., it allows multiple contributors to create, store, edit, and publish content on the website without any hassle. The primary uses of CMS are for enterprise content management (ECM) and web content management (WCM).

    This blog post intends to expand your knowledge of the content management system (CMS). It will walk you through the definition and working of CMS, along with the major reasons to use CMS. Also, you will learn the key steps for building a website using CMS.

    So, let us begin our discussion!

    What is CMS?

    CMS stands for Content Management System. It is a tool that enables businesses and individuals to create, edit, and manage content on their websites with little to no coding knowledge. It provides a user-friendly interface and allows you to customize your website’s design and functionality with templates and extensions.

    In short, a content management system is a tool that enables users to build and manage websites without the need to code.

    The content management system handles all the fundamental requirements of your website, such as creating web pages, storing images, and many other functions. It lets users focus on creating interesting and engaging content that results in conversions and leads.

    Besides websites, you can also leverage a content management system for various other purposes, such as document management.

    What Makes Up a Content Management System (CMS)?

    A content management system consists of two parts, namely CMA and CDA.

    • CMA: CMA stands for Content Management Application. It allows you to add and manage content on your website.
    • CDA: CDA stands for Content Delivery Application. It is the back-end of CMS. It is responsible for taking the content from CMA, storing it, and making it visible to visitors of your website.

    CMA and CDA work together and make it easier for you to maintain your website.

    Website Building and Content Management Without CMS

    Building and managing a website manually is a pretty daunting task for individuals with no experience in coding. Here is a brief overview of the same.

    Basically, you need to begin with HTML for adding various elements to your website, such as text, images, navigation bars, buttons, etc. In short, you create a basic structure of your website using HTML. Later, you need to use CSS to style those elements and give a unique look and feel to your website.

    After styling the elements, you need to use JavaScript to control the behavior of those elements. Once done, you need to upload the HTML file to the server.

    Here, the major problem is that whenever you need to make small changes to your website, you need to download the file from the server, open it, and manipulate the HTML code. Also, you have to be very careful and make sure that you did not break any links before uploading that file back to the server.

    The entire process seems complicated, right? It might be a child's play for experienced web developers. However, those with little to no experience in website development are likely to face a lot of difficulties. To overcome the challenge of managing all the website code manually, a CMS emerges as the best option.

    How Does CMS Work?

    As discussed earlier, a content management system consists of a content management application (CMA) and a content delivery application (CDA). Both these components together handle all your website’s entire code, database queries, and infrastructure so that you can concentrate on generating high-quality content.

    Let us understand the working of a content management system by taking one CMS as a reference. Here, we shall consider WordPress, which is a popular and widely used content management system.

    WordPress provides you with a content editor that has an easy-to-use interface. It allows you to write and edit content and insert images and tables with just a few clicks without having to write HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code.

    Here is how it looks in the WordPress editor:

    You can easily write and edit your content, categorize it based on its category, and add media, like images.

    Now, let us peek into the ‘Add Media’ section to know how easy it is to add media to your content.

    You just need to drag media files from your computer system and drop them here. Isn’t it easy? Also, there is no need to communicate with the server .

    Once you write your content, you are just a click away from making it live. Hitting the ‘Publish’ button will make your content live on your website. In case of any changes, you can easily edit the content anytime.

    Moreover, you will find a plethora of WordPress themes that give your website a unique look and plugins for extra functionality. You can install themes and plugins as per your choice and requirements.

    Top 8 Reasons to Use CMS

    Here are some significant reasons why you should use a content management system:

    1. No Coding Knowledge Required

    CMS has revolutionized the way of developing websites. It has made it easier for individuals to build websites without requiring any knowledge of coding. They can build and manage content, give the desired look and feel to their websites through themes, extend the functionality of CMS using plugins, etc., all without writing a single line of code.

    2. Easy Collaboration

    A content management system allows multiple users to work at the back-end simultaneously. It means that a specific user can produce content, the other user can implement security protocols, and one can add custom code themes, all happening at the same time. Therefore, CMS improves the workflow and allows you and your team to work efficiently.

    3. User Roles and Permissions

    A content management system comes with a feature of user roles and permissions, where each user is assigned a specific role. For instance, content writers can only create, edit, publish, and manage content. However, they cannot alter the website’s functionality, which is the role of an administrator.

    4. Security Features

    CMS comes with built-in features and add-ons that help you secure your website against various types of attacks. Many content management systems even provide a dedicated security team to ensure that your website is secure and recover your website from any type of attack.

    5. Predesigned Templates

    Many content management systems come with predesigned templates. These templates come in handy to quickly customize your website’s appearance. They can even affect the behavior of your website. Therefore, it is advisable to choose a responsive template that works well on all devices and provides a great experience to your visitors.

    6. SEO Features and Extensions

    With a content management system’s built-in features and add-ons, you can optimize your website for search engines. In addition to built-in tools, you can also use third-party tools to implement the following best practices to increase the chances of your website ranking in various search engines.

    • Choose SEO-friendly URL structures
    • Customize page titles and meta descriptions
    • Add image alt text
    • Optimize page load times
    • Create XML sitemaps
    • Create 301 redirects
    • Include breadcrumb navigation

    7. Easy Access

    You can use a content management system on any device with an internet connection. On the other hand, when you build a website from scratch using HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, it requires you to use that particular device that is connected to the server for making changes to your website.

    Most content management systems provide you with almost everything you need to customize and manage your websites, such as themes, plugins, settings, website content, etc., all in a single dashboard or panel.

    8. Easy Update

    Whether it is a major change, such as a website redesign, or a minor change, such as changing images on your home page, a content management system makes it easier for you to make any update on your website. Also, the content editor of a content management system assists you in editing content and keeping it updated.

    Advantages and Disadvantages of CMS

    The following are some significant upsides and downsides of a content management system:

    Advantages

    • Hassle-free Publishing: Any individual without the knowledge of coding can write, edit, and publish content on a website effortlessly and quickly from a single dashboard.
    • Easy Content Scheduling: A content management system enables administrators to schedule content to be published on a specific date and time.
    • Ideal for any Size of Business: CMS is ideal for businesses of all sizes. Whether you are a reputed brand in the industry or just starting your own business, a CMS will help you manage your website effectively. The only thing you need to keep in mind is to choose the right web hosting provider.
    • Easy to Control and Affordable: Instead of paying a large amount to web developers for website maintenance and routine changes, you can use a CMS as an affordable option.
    • Customization: Customization is the primary advantage of using a content management system. It enables you to tweak your website’s appearance and functionality through the use of themes and plugins, respectively.

    Disadvantages

    • The major drawback of a content management system is that it is more vulnerable to security threats if you do not follow appropriate security practices.
    • All users require training on how to use a content management system.
    • The admin has to be very careful while configuring a content management system; otherwise, it may break.
    • The speed of a web page designed using CMS is relatively slower than the one designed using traditional development methods.
    • It is essential to regularly update the content management system; otherwise, it may become a victim of spammers and attackers.
    • CMS consumes an entire RAM space. Therefore, it becomes challenging for users to carry out multiple tasks simultaneously on the same system.

    How to Build a Website Using CMS?

    It is pretty easy for individuals with little to no coding knowledge to build a website using a content management system. The following is an easy process of building a website using a content management system:

    • Firstly, purchase web hosting and a domain name for your website.
    • Later, install the content management system of your choice on your web server.
    • You need to now configure the content management system to define your website's appearance and functionality.
    • Finally, use the content management system’s interface to add content to your website.

    Conclusion

    CMS is a system that enables non-developers to build and manage websites. It lets them write, edit, publish, and manage digital content on their websites without any hassle. Not only a content management system enables you to build and manage a website, but it also lets you use various themes and plugins, allows multiple users to work simultaneously, and supports easy and quick updates to any part of the website.

    We hope you found this blog post helpful and enlightening. Still, if you have any queries related to CMS, feel free to post them in the comments section below.

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    FAQs


    The following are some of the most popular content management systems: WordPress Joomla Drupal Sitecore Magento Ghost Webflow CMS Hub

    A content management system is an ideal option to use if you are creating a large website with multiple web pages and you require to make changes or modifications to your website down the line. This is because a content management system makes it easy for you to edit existing web pages, create web forms, add new or edit existing content, and much more.

    With a content management system, it is possible to create web pages without the need to write any HTML code. It provides a plethora of themes to choose from to create customized web pages.

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